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Getting tested for travel during a covid spike

Getting tested for travel during a covid spike
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Do you need a covid test for travel during a spike in cases?

Many destinations no longer require arriving travellers to show a negative covid test result. But amid anxiety about news of the Pirola variant you may be wondering if you should get tested for covid before travel or after you return from a trip abroad.

Is the Pirola variant a risk at my destination?

Media outlets have given the nickname ‘Pirola’ to a covid strain called BA.2.86. Some immunologists think it has potential to lead to widespread covid cases because it has a lot of mutations on the spike protein that the virus uses to enter cells. But as yet, little is known about how easy it is to catch or spread this strain and other immunologist think it is unlikely to cause a spike in cases. You can learn more about BA.2.86 from The British Medical Journal.

How can I avoid exposure to covid-19 and respiratory infections?

It can be hard to avoid catching respiratory infections. But if they are a concern, avoid mass gatherings, don’t touch your face, cover your coughs and sneezes and wash your hands frequently. Some travellers also choose to wear a mask when in an enclosed space.

You can make sure you’re up-to-date with boosters for covid and other infections that enter the body via respiratory droplets, including measles and meningitis. When you come to your travel health appointment at Canadian Travel Clinics, you can learn more about the recommended vaccines for the country you are visiting and the activities you have planned.

How do I work out the testing requirements for my destination?

Many travellers want to know if they will need to show a negative covid test result on their journey. Border requirements can change suddenly and without notice, so it's best to check regularly with reliable sources in the lead-up to your trip. That way you can avoid delays and complications.

Some reliable ways to find out entry requirements for any destination are:

Can I get a travel covid test for my own peace of mind?

Our covid tests are suitable for anyone who does not have covid symptoms. If you want to get a covid test for your own peace of mind, our travel covid testing service is an accessible, convenient way of doing that.

Should I get a covid booster before travelling?

Alberta residents who are not up to date with their shots can get a covid booster for free at our Calgary and Edmonton branches.

How do I make an appointment with Canadian Travel Clinics for covid testing before travel?

It’s very easy to get an appointment for pre-travel covid testing at Canadian Travel Clinics. Go to our clinics page and select your nearest city. All our clinics are in convenient central locations. We have plenty of travel covid testing appointments and you can get a travel health appointment at the start of or the end of the working day.

We recommend that anyone planning a trip abroad makes a travel health appointment with us six to eight weeks before travel. This will allow plenty of time for you to get travel health advice and to have full courses of all the vaccines you need, including those that are given in multiple doses.